Fayetteville State University National Alumni President Supports “A Call to Colors” – GDN Exclusive Part XIVby Cash Michaels Contributing Writer July 9, 2018
Vote for Your Old White & Blue!
As the days and weeks go by, anticipation grows as to how voters will respond this November when the midterms arrive.
On the campuses of historically black colleges and universities, that question looms even larger when it comes whether students will exercise their franchise to weigh-in on the issues that will greatly affect their futures. That’s why Greater Diversity News (GDN) is teaming up with HBCUs across North Carolina to sponsor “A Call to Colors,” a unique, nonpartisan voter registration drive encompassing HBCU campuses across North Carolina, in hopes of registering students in time for the fall midterm elections.
Raymond Privott is the President of the National Alumni Association for Fayetteville State University (FSU). He is in full agreement, he says with the Chancellors and Presidents of other HBCUs across North Carolina, in addition to other national alumni association Presidents that it is imperative to get fraternities, sororities and other campus-based student groups invested in voter registration.
Especially for this coming midterm election.
“I think the effort to register students on all HBCU campuses is of utmost importance, especially now, Mr. Privott told GDN recently. “I think our students need to realize as a young people that their votes certainly do count, and that they are the tipping point for whatever happens in our nation as far as governance is concerned.”
“Because HBCUs are in a pretty bad predicament at this time…because of some of the policies of the sitting administrations have levied against us, and continue to levy against us as a people of color, I feel that the only way that we’re going to make a change, is through the ballot box. Our students didn’t realize it in the last election that they’re very, very important if a change is going to be made now.”
Mr. Privott continued, “We as baby boomers sit around and complain and gripe, but our job is to get the millennials to realize the importance of voting. They have not been through the historic [civil rights movement] era that we went through, and I think they need to understand that. But I think they’re feeling a little bit of it with the cuts in funding for HBCUs.”
‘We have to somehow get them up, and registered, and then mobilize them, and get them out to vote.”
Raymond Privott, a proud Bronco, graduated Fayetteville State University in 1970. While a student, Mr. Privott was a member of the Groove Phi Groove Social Fellowship, Inc. He also served in student government, in the school band, and was the Sports Editor of the school newspaper.
GDN’s strategy for “A Call to Colors”
GDN’s strategy for “A Call to Colors” response is quite simple and powerful. Ask all alumni associations, at all levels, to create standing committees for non-partisan civic engagement. They would ask their members to volunteer 8, 16, 24 hours or more per election cycle, to help mobilize Black voter participation. Volunteer activities could include making telephone calls, Facebook posting, door knocking, organizing their churches or other community-based organizations, Greek organizations, working polls, supporting the NAACP and more.
GDN recommends that Alumni Association urge all HBCU Student Government Associations (SGAs) to make similar civic engagement pledges. SGAs should have twice a year student rallies promoting civic engagement and student organizations. “A Call to Colors” is a suggestion that appeals to student and HBCU Alumni members sense of community responsibility.
He joins Warren Arrington, President of the Livingstone College National Alumni Association; Dr. Jimmy Jenkins, President of Livingstone; Dr. Everett Ward, President of St. Augustine’s University; Dr. John Larkins, President of the St. Augustine’s University National Alumni Association; Congressman G. K. Butterfield (D-NC-1); Congresswoman Alma Adams (D-NC-12); NC Sec. of Veteran Affairs Larry Hall; Rev. Dr. T. Anthony Spearman, President of the NC NAACP; newly appointed State Senator Milton “Toby” Fitch, who is also “Most Worshipful Grand Master State of NC and Jurisdiction of the Prince Hall Mason Lodge; Dr. Lavonia Allison, former Chair of the Durham Committee on the Affairs of Black People; Charles Warren, Chairman of the NC Black Leadership Caucus; and N. Carnell Robinson, past Chairman of the NC Black Leadership Caucus; Andrea Harris, Senior Fellow of the Durham-based Self-Help Credit Union; John C. Easterling III, President of the College Democrats of North Carolina and Robert Stephens, Founder of the HBCU Collective, in endorsing “A Call to Colors” civic engagement campaign.
“A Call to Colors” campaign is working to formally engage with the Pan-Hellenic Councils, the NC NAACP, the NC Black Leadership Caucus, the Prince Hall Masons and the Eastern Star, among others, to support the effort.
“A Call to Colors” initiative is being spearheaded by Attorney Peter Grear, a 1966 graduate of FSU, Co-Publisher of Greater Diversity News and a member of Omega Psi Phi fraternity.
Mr. Privott also joins other black leadership who endorse “A Call to Colors” action plan recommendation to subscribe to Greater Diversity News’, regular Civic Engagement Project eNews, for free at www.greaterdiversity.com.